Rayceen Pendarvis is an emcee, entertainer, activist, SWERV magazine columnist, former ANC Commissioner, and lifelong Washingtonian. Over the years, Pendarvis has hosted numerous fundraisers, pride festivals, arts festivals, talent showcases, fashion shows, balls, and other events. Furhermore, the Queen of the Shameless Plug frequently moderates panels and appears as a panelist at various conferences dealing with social justice and LGBTQ equality. In addition to a regular column in SWERV, Pendarvis also has written articles for Tagg, Unite Virginia, and TUV magazines.
The Goddess of DC has been honored by the community many times over the past several years, including awards from NYC’s Latex Ball, The DC Center for the LGBT Community, Casa Ruby, Empowerment Liberation Cathedral Church, and the Community Church of Washington, DC. In 2016, Capital Pride selected Pendarvis to be a recipient of the Heroes Award and appear in the annual Capital Pride Parade.
Later that year, despite not being ordained or ministering in a traditional capacity, Pendarvis was voted Best Clergy in the Washington Blade’s 2016 Best of Gay DC Awards. A tireless advocate, promoter, and champion of various causes, Pendarvis has earned the monikers “Queen of the Shameless Plug” and the “Goddess of DC.”
Rayceen Pendarvis can be seen regularly as the host of The Ask Rayceen Show, a free, monthly, live event on first Wednesdays (March-November) in DC. In addition to live music, show segments include panel discussions, interviews, competitions, improv comedy, and audience participation games. All are welcome and admission is always FREE.
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To further explore the extraordinary life and career of Rayceen Pendarvis, click below.
The professional career of Rayceen Pendarvis is one that constantly grows and evolves with each new endeavor. Although well known as an openly gay emcee, activist, entertainer, writer, entrepreneur, and so much more, Pendarvis is never interested in limiting professional career boundaries or creative reach. Despite this, “the Earthmother of the Gays” is also very conscious of not abandoning the basic moral integrity that has become the foundation of a meaningful life's work. For this reason, the consciously minded equality advocate has repeatedly refused financially lucrative projects that did not uphold positive values for the LGBT community, or society at large. Only creative ventures that are deemed uplifting and non-stereotypical are given the green light from the Pendarvis camp. This ensures that each new undertaking and every new avenue explored will be represented in the most admirable way. It's especially important since most of the people and causes that Pendarvis is passionate about are greatly undeserved.
With a heartfelt mission and clearly defined goals on the agenda, Pendarvis looks back on a body of work that resonates with meaningful intent. With a strong moral compass to guide the way, and a genuine heartfelt sense of advocacy, Pendarvis declares “I think it's important that you make the time that you're born and the time that you die and the dash in between account for something.” Indeed, Pendarvis is continuously working to make his “dash” in life, a throughly meaningful one!
Below are highlights of the many career endeavors Pendarvis has proudly taken on during the course of an amazing career.
Over the years, Rayceen Pendarvis has had various careers in the entertainment industry. Today, most fans are well aware of the clever comedic talent Pendarvis displays on stage (and off stage for that matter). The rare and priceless art of blessing people with the gift of laughter has become a cornerstone of the diva's DNA.
In addition to the career endeavors Pendarvis is well known for – Host, Emcee, Motivational Speaker and Equality Advocate, there have also been exciting forays as an Actor, Recording Artist, Ballroom Legend and much more. Yet, there's one realm of entertainment Pendarvis completely conquered that some may not be aware of. The ingenious art of performing as a Female Illusionist. This creative entry on the Pendarvis resumé gave the DC icon the opportunity to truly SHINE!
Each night the curtains would open and out stepped a glamorous potpourri of HAIR, MAKEUP, JEWERLY, and COSTUMES, all topped with a megawatt helping of ATTITUDE! These artistic interpretations were loving performed with a great deal of admiration for the art form, as well as, the legendary artists Pendarvis paid tribute to. One look at these Las Vegas style performances and viewers were instantly transformed to a different time and place, carefully selected by the creative imagination of Pendarvis.
As the stage lights dimmed, the curtains would open and out stepped a BIG, BEAUTIFUL, BADASS DIVA jammin' inside a fierce 1970's discotheque. Then, as the curtain pulled back for the second act, the beautiful sounds of “Mr. Melody” would begin blaring over the sound system as the incomparable Natalie Cole graced the stage, RULING THE AUDIENCE with her every note as only the daughter of a KING can do.
Finally, as the crowd braced themselves for the grand finalé, stage lights would illuminate center stage to reveal the UNDISPUTED QUEEN OF DISCO, the phenomenal Donna Summer, saving the ABSOLUTE BEST for last. These iconic performances gave audience members a chance to sit back, unwind, and toss away their cares while basking in the glow of a carefully selected roster of their most beloved entertainers.
Fortunately, this exciting chapter of the Pendarvis legacy is well documented on video and preserved for your enjoyment. Click below to view a select group of vintage performances and get ready to be ENTERTAINED.